Random records through the 2017 ComFor conference

Random records through the 2017 ComFor conference

Regular readers with this blog may have wondered why, after 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, there clearly was no blogpost regarding the 2016 ComFor (German Society for Comics Studies) seminar. There clearly was a straightforward basis for that: we hadn’t attended last year’s seminar. A couple of weeks ago, nonetheless, we took the journey to Bonn where this year’s meeting (topic: “Comics and their Popularity”) happened. Take note that the next records aren’t meant to acceptably summarise the conference that is respective; alternatively they’re rather subjective and random – ergo the name for this blogpost.

The meeting began on Friday, December 1 aided by the Workshops” that is“Open.e. Documents outside the meeting theme of “Comics and their Popularity”.

  • The very first presentation ended up being by Zita Husing (Bonn) on “Being and Nature: the importance associated with the Southern Space regarding the Swamp in Alan Moore’s The Saga associated with Swamp Thing” in which she submit connections between tropes regarding the United states South and Swamp Thing, e.g. That both are difficult to kill – no matter exactly how poorly they truly are maimed or burned down, they constantly keep coming back through the dead. Like was remarked into the conversation a short while later, but, it is interesting how article writers after Moore, such as for example Jeff Lemire, have actually expanded Swamp Thing’s backstory into a cosmology that shifts the main focus through the regional to your international.
  • Within the 2nd paper, “Batwing, Batflugel oder Flugel-Bat. Die onimischen Einheiten im Comic” (“onimic devices in comics” – all translations mine), Rafal Jakiel (Wroclaw) looked over the names (poetonyms) of figures in superhero comics and identified faculties such as for instance their simple iconicity: by way of example, Killer Croc is merely a murderous guy whom seems like a crocodile.
  • Daniela Kaufmann (Graz) then delivered “A Study in grayscale. Zur Signifikanz der Farben Schwarz und Wei? im Comic” (“on the value of this tints white and black in comics”). Beginning Kazimir Malevich’s Ebony Square – showcased e.g. In Nicolas Mahler’s comic Lulu und das Schwarze Quadrat – she proceeded to Krazy Kat therefore the ambiguity that is racial of its creator George Herriman and its particular eponymous protagonist.
  • This is followed closely by Elisabeth Krieber‘s (Salzburg) paper on “Subversive feminine shows in artistic Media – Phoebe Gloeckner’s and Alison Bechdel’s Graphic Narratives” which additionally considered the adaptation that is musical of Residence and also the movie adaptation of Diary of a Teenage woman.

Unfortuitously we missed the following two speaks by Karoline M. Pohl and Sakshi Wason, correspondingly, whom shut the “Open Workshops” section after which it the documents in the “Popularity” theme began.

  • The presentation that is next attended had been by Veronique Sina (Cologne / Tubingen) on “Comickeit is Judischkeit. Uber das diskursive Zusammenspiel von Comic, Popularkultur und judischer Identitat” (“on the discursive interplay of comics, popular tradition, and Jewish identity”). Her examples that are main the comics of Aline Kominsky-Crumb and Harvey Pekar, and she additionally talked about Jonas Engelmann’s theory of popular tradition once the dissolution of identification.
  • Pnina Rosenberg (Haifa) mentioned “Mickey au camp de Gurs: governmental critique and automobile censorship in comics done through the Holocaust”, by which she offered three image publications produced by Hans Rosenthal during their internment at a concentration camp in 1942.
  • The very first keynote associated with meeting was presented with by Julia Round (Bournemouth), en en titled “Canon or popular? Sandman, Aesthetics, Intertextuality and Literariness”. She talked about the ongoing fight about the status of comics as a whole and Sandman in specific as literary works (also: high vs. Low art, “graphic novels” vs. Comic publications), just just exactly how this really is suffering from the intimate writer idea around Neil Gaiman (“Mr Gaiman could be the Sandman” – Clive Barker), and just how this discourse comes to your fore in fan conversations at neilgaimanboard.com.

Saturday, December 2:

  • In their talk on “Batmans queere Popularitat. Ein comicwissenschaftlicher und kulturhistorischer Annaherungsversuch” (“Batman’s queer popularity. A method through the viewpoint of comics studies and history” that is cultural, Daniel Stein (Siegen) talked about how Batman is appropriated as homosexual by some visitors, although some are gripped by ‘queer anxiety’, i.e. The fear that their beloved character might formally be homosexual.
  • Laura Antola‘s (Turku) paper “Marvel’s Comics in Finland: Translation, ‘Mail-Man’ in addition to rise in popularity of superheroes” portrayed the figure that is eccentric of, a real-life translator and editor whom additionally replied fan mail into the page pages of Finnish Marvel comics from 1980 onward.
  • “Das Popula(e)re und das Signifikante. Der Comic als Antwort auf die Krise liberaler Erzahlungen? ” (“The popular together with significant. Comics as a response into the crisis of liberal narratives? ”) by Mario Zehe (Leipzig) talked about Economix by Goodwin/Burr, Le Singe de Hartlepool by Lupano/Moreau, and fortunate Luke: Los Angeles Terre vow by Jul/Achde as samples of comics that reveal the limitations of cosmopolitanism.
  • Stephan Packard (Cologne) mentioned “President Lex Luthor, Wakanda und der osteuropaische Schwarzwald. Zur popularen Ideologie der Fiktionalitat in Comics” (“President Lex Luthor, Wakanda while the Eastern European Black Forest. Regarding the popular ideology of fictionality in comics”) therefore the connection that is sometimes problematic fictional things and their real-world counterparts. A striking instance is the current “Alien Nation” tale from Captain Marvel vol. 1 (2017) that will be partly set into the “Black Forest”, albeit A black colored woodland that does not look any such thing such as the genuine one out camsloveaholics.com/female/smoking/ of Southern Western Germany and it is situated, relating to a caption, in “Eastern Europe”. Packard unfolded a concise framework that is theoretical included the types of fiction concept talked about by Marie-Laure Ryan including the ‘principle of minimal departure’, but also Theodor Adorno’s ‘categorical imperative regarding the tradition industry’, amongst others.

Lecture hallway IX at Bonn University during David Turgay’s talk. Photograph by Ronny Bittner

The next paper had been David Turgay‘s (Landau) extremely interesting “Das alternate im Popularen: Eine korpusgestutzte Analyse von Mainstream-Comics” (“the alternative within the popular: a corpus-based analysis of mainstream comics”) in which he examined the panels of 150 US comic publications from 1996 and from 2016 pertaining to six requirements: politics / social critique, narrative peculiarities, creative peculiarities, metafictional elements, absence of fighting, and lack of text. The outcomes associated with the analysis revealed a significant enhance of those requirements in the long run, but overall these traits (which David Turgay interpreted while the impact of separate comics) nevertheless took place less frequently in 2016 than expected.

  • The Librarian from the film UHF – as a librarian myself, I can’t believe I had never heard of him before!
  • Dietrich Grunewald (Reiskirchen) talked about “Grenzganger in his presentation on “Der Fluch der Graphic Novel aus (hochschul)didaktischer Sicht” (“the curse of the graphic novel from the perspective of (tertiary) education”), Markus Oppolzer (Salzburg) discussed the dreaded g-word again, but he also mentioned Conan. Comics Bildende that is und Kunst (“border crossers. Comics and art” that is fine and exactly how artwork such as for instance paintings are utilized in comics, e.g. As background details in Volker Reiche’s Strizz.
  • Christian A. Bachmann‘s (Bochum) share ended up being most likely the one with all the longest name: “Slippers and music are particularly various things, oder: von high key to low key. Zur Darstellung popularer Musik in Bildergeschichten diverses 19. Und Comics des fruhen 20. Jahrhunderts” (“from high key to low key. In the depiction of popular music in image tales regarding the nineteenth and comics for the very early twentieth century”). Among their examples had been Billy DeBeck’s Barney Bing and Richard F. Outcault’s Buster Brown.
  • Kirsten von Hagen (Gie?en) delivered a paper on “Tintin und die Recherche: Von der ‘ligne claire’ Herges zu den synasthetischen Traumsequenzen bei Heuet” (“Tintin and also the recherche: from Herge’s ‘ligne claire’ to Heuet’s synesthetic fantasy sequences”). Stephane Heuet adapted Marcel Proust’s searching for Lost Time as a number of comic volumes utilizing a ligne claire design.
  • Martin Lund (Vaxjo / brand brand brand brand New York) provided the keynote that is second “Jack T. Chick, a favorite Propagandist”. With more than 260 ‘Chick tracts’ since 1961 of which a calculated 900 million copies have now been distributed, Chick may have been “the most commonly distributed comics creator in the field” (Darby Orcutt 2010 – but see also https: //en. Wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_comic_series). Chick’s comics are really a wellspring of real information on subjects such as for instance development, abortion and environment modification; by way of example, did you know “global warming experts pray to Ixchel“, the Mayan “goddess associated with the moon and creativity”? But really: based on Martin Lund, the Chick tracts had been never ever designed to transform unbelievers to Chick’s beliefs that are twisted but alternatively to reassure the individuals whom currently had been on their part.
  • Sunday, December 3:

    • Michael Wetzel‘s (Bonn) paper ended up being en titled Auteurism‘ that is“‘Graphic Kreativitat und Copyright im Comic” (“On imagination and copyright in comics”). An appealing theory had been that the favorite notion of a ‘Romanticist idea of authorship’ is flawed because Romanticist writers such as for example E. T. A. Hoffmann actually deconstructed authorship.